We’ll see your Klondike bar and bag of 7-Eleven potato chips, and raise you an ice cream sandwich the size of YOUR FACE and the most explosive loaded fries in Chicago. Then we'll fold, and actually go eat the 30 best munchies in the Chicagoland. Happy 4/20, indeed.
Waffles Cafe (address and info) Lakeview/Streeterville/South Loop Cakey, fluffy, deep-fried goodness dipped (or double-dipped) in sugar, marshmallow, maple, or chocolate glaze and then covered in sprinkles, chocolate shavings, and... do we need to keep going?
Acquired Taste: Blood Rice Cakes With Timothy DeLaGhetto and Justina Valentine
Flo (address and info) West Town French toast coated in your favorite sugary childhood cereal. Bring on the cartoons.
The Colombian-style dog
Rapidito Colombian Gourmet Bites (address and info) Lincoln Park Toppings include pulled chicken, cheese, and crushed potato chips. Oh, and hard-boiled quail eggs. OH, and pineapple sauce. GUYS AND ketchup, mustard, and honey.
Sunda (address and info) River North If you want to drink this 32oz Bloody Mary, you’re gonna have to eat through the decadent Chinese buffet first. Don’t worry, the baked snow crab hand roll, duck bao, braised pork belly, three slices of bacon, herb-roasted potatoes, loompya stick, oshinko, and Chinese broccoli will go down easy.
Maple Bacon Long John
Glazed & Infused (address and info) Lincoln Park You can’t go wrong with this chocolate-coated Long John topped with a thick strip of peppered bacon that's covered in syrup glaze. Better pick up a dozen, just in case.
Buzz Bar (address and info) North Center What’s better than two glazed donuts on 4/20? Two glazed donuts with a burger between ‘em on 4/20 -- not to mention smoked bacon, cheese, caramelized strawberries, and truffle aioli.
Fatso's Last Stand (address and info) Ukrainian Village Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to house this 7lb po’ boy (2lbs of which are fried jumbo shrimp), then polish off a pound of shoestring fries and down a 32oz soda... in 45 minutes or less if you want to win the challenge. Or in whatever time you want if you want to win at life.
Mac & Cheese Attack
Rockit Burger Bar (address and info) Wrigleyville Bro. Beef patty slapped between two pieces of fried mac & cheese.
Bacon fat popcorn
Revolution Brewpub (address and info) Logan Square Have you had popcorn that’s been tossed around in salt, sage, and bacon fat, then topped with extra bacon chunks and Parmesan cheese before? You should get a big bowl.
Big Star (address and info) Wicker Park Big Star is famous for cheap and tasty tacos, but the melted queso Chihuahua cheese with meaty chorizo and peppers is what your taste buds have been searching for in between GTA V levels.
XXX Hot Wings Challenge
Jake Melnick's Corner Tap (address and info) River North Today might be the day you find your face up on Jake Melnick’s “Wall of Flame” if you can finish off some hot wings cooked with Trinidad Scorpion pepper without screaming for a “cooling plate.” And since you can't feel anything right now, this is totally a great move. Oh, and if scorching off your taste buds isn’t your thing, there’s always the 8lb Monster Burger.
Ice cream donut sandwich
Firecakes Donuts (address and info) River North These vanilla bean gelato-stuffed donuts with chocolate sauce and cocoa nibs are heavy hitters but light as air, so you’ll be able to easily eat two. Or 22.
Au Cheval (address and info) West Loop Everyone knows Au Cheval has awesome burgers. Unless their short-term memory is gone today, in which case only some people know. Annnnnnyway, the fried bologna sandwich is ALSO awesome -- a cheesy, meaty, salty combination layered between halves of the softest bun ever.
Big Fatty Challenge
Hamburger Mary's (address and info) Andersonville When you can’t decide whether you want something salty, sweet, or spicy, why not get all three? Hamburger Mary’s Big Fatty Challenge covers all the basics for when the munchies strike: huge-ass burger, fries, hot wings, chicken tenders, onion rings, and deep-fried Twinkies. This, my friends, is not a drill.
Bacon mac & cheese dog
Franks ‘n Dawgs (address and info) Lincoln Park It’s not every day you can get a handmade bacon Bratwurst topped with truffle mac & cheese with Parmesan and bread crumbs piled onto a brioche roll... oh wait, it is.
Chili Mac Attack
Handlebar (address and info) Bucktown Creamy smoked gouda mac piled high with veggie chili, aged cheddar, sour cream, house-made pickled jalapeños, pico, tortilla crisps, and... wait, what were we talking about?
Lucky's Sandwich Co. (address and info) Wrigleyville One overstuffed sandwich with fries in it? Mmm. THREE overstuffed sandwiches with fries in them? Mmm mmm mmm.
Tater tot pizza
Quenchers Saloon (address and info) Logan Square Well, they’ve got a pizza topped with tater tots, bacon, and cheddar cheese, so...
Macadamia Turtle Pie
Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse (address and info) Near North Side Vanilla ice cream turtle pie covered in macadamia nuts and surrounded with a cinnamon-laced crumbly crust. The servers usually slice this quarter of a pie into pieces so you can share it. Tell them not to do that.
Ramen Kobe Burger
Buzz Bar (address and info) North Center The ramen buns on Buzz Bar’s ramen burger (deemed one of the best deep-fried foods in Chicago) are buttered before they’re griddled, and the Kobe beef patty comes with a fried egg, gooey sharp cheddar cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, peppery arugula, and Sriracha sauce on top. Try not to make a mess.
Hoppin' Hots (address and info) Andersonville A gourmet hot dog topped with teriyaki pork, pineapple relish, pickled red onions, crushed avocado, and Cotija cheese. Uh huh.
Edzo’s Burger Shop (address and info) Evanston/Wrigleyville They're like the loaded cheese fries you left your house looking for, except 100,000,000,000,000 times better -- with bacon, Merkts cheddar, green onions, and sour cream.
Ice cream cookie sandwich
Cookies & Carnitas (address and info) Edgewater There’s no way we’d turn down an ice cream sandwich made with chewy, plate-sized cookies stuffed to the gills with almost a pint of Häagen-Dazs vanilla, then rolled in chocolate chips or crushed peanuts. No. Way.
Kaiser Tiger (address and info) West Loop If there was a golden bong you could hand out to the place with the best munchies in Chicago, it'd go to Kaiser Tiger and this 5lb loaf of ground sausage, pork, and beef with a sugar-bacon woven exterior and a pepper-bacon center.